• Has chemo caused TMJ issues for anyone?

    Asked by ddkk3 on Tuesday, May 7, 2013

    Has chemo caused TMJ issues for anyone?

    Now every time I have an issue, I don't know if it's related to chemo or not! Anyway, I seem to have developed what I am assuming is TMJ. The joint in front of my ear is very painful when I try to open or close my jaw all the way. I can mostly only eat soft foods now. It's been like this for about a week.

    Anyway, do you think I should see a dentist? Ask my oncologist (like I said, I'm not sure if it's related to chemo but I have never had any issues with TMJ or teeth grinding or anything like that in the past)? Do nothing? I have heard that a dentist can't really do much for me anyway.

    5 Answers from the Community

    5 answers
    • fastdog's Avatar

      I have no idea if it could be related to cancer, but I am a TMJ veteran of many years. A dentist can't do much about TMJ, but he can refer you to a maxillo-facial specialist. I had TMJ so bad that I had 2 surgeries, one to repair the joint and one to completely remove the joint on the other side. You might check with your onc. first to see if it could be cancer- or chemo-related. At the age of 40, I had braces to try to correct the problem, but that didn't help and on I went to surgery. In case you are grinding at night, there is a horshoe-shaped piece of rubber you can buy at the drug section of a store, this may help a little. I'm sure there are many improvements in the field since I went through the TMJ thing, mine was years and years ago. Good luck to you.

      over 4 years ago
    • Tracy's Avatar

      Talk to your Oncologist, it could be the stress affecting you this way. When your body is in a battle situation, stress comes out in different ways, this may be one of them. I have this problem as well as a reaction to pain. There is medication that helps this as well as mouth guards. Tracy

      over 4 years ago
    • gwendolyn's Avatar

      Your jaw may just be a bit out of alignment. Can definitely happen when under stress. For that, I would see a chiropractor or maybe a dentist. Definitely seek help. This may be something easily resolved.

      over 4 years ago
    • Rosa's Avatar

      For a few days after every chemo treatment (oxaliplatin) I had pain in my jaw whenever I tried to drink something. It stopped after a few days and have not had any more after I finished chemo almost a year ago.

      over 4 years ago
    • jhale17's Avatar

      My wife had a jaw problem like TMJ. It turned out the muscles holding the joint together had loosened enough to cause pain when chewing. Our dentist referred her to a specialist. Part of the treatment used TINS using two patches of electrodes on the jaw. These were connected to a battery pack that sends low level electrical current to the area. The current blocks the pain from getting to the brain. It got better with treatment. They also had her put an appliance in the mouth at night to prevent her from grinding her teeth in her sleep. It sounds like this is outside your oncologist specialty. Your dentist could advise you.

      over 4 years ago

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